The New World in Monster Hunter: World is no place for the meek and feeble. It's a jungle out there, hunters, and a jungle is bound to have predators. Some of them fly, some swim, some breathe fire, but all of them can make you obliterate that game controller in an infantile fit of rage. It might be unforgiving but not knowing when to adapt is a straight path to defeat. After all, your character is a mere human in the land of titans.
Thankfully, you can ease the blow of your predators by wearing armor made out of their body parts both as a reward and to spite them. The fun begins once you get the hang of it and pretty soon you'll start looking like all the monsters you've hunted. There are actually so many armors this game but some are worth more your time than others. Here are 10 of them to make you a more proficient hunter. Bear in mind that mixing and matching armor sets is better, but if you really want that full set bonus, then you still can't go wrong with wearing these as a set.
Last updated: December 12th, 2019 to include armor sets from Monster Hunter World: Iceborne, the massive DLC expansion Capcom release for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in September.
15 BONE SET
You're in the New World, so forget about all the flashy metal plate armor or the professional-looking leather straps. Upgrading your armor in Monster Hunter: World requires limited but replenishable resources and you don't want to spend those on subpar metal or leather armor. No, you will want the Bone Armor Set as your long-term starter gear-- something that will carry your blunderous novice posterior.
Actually, the bone set might even be more stylish than early metal or leather armors and that's just a bonus. What makes the Bone Set shine is its well-rounded defenses. Other armor types and sets trade one or two damage resistances for another, the Bone Set trades nothing and you can wear it against any type of monster attack regardless of the element. It's also ideal for those who don't like switching their armor a lot.
14 RATHALOS SET
Once you get past your baby steps and are ready to ditch the Bone Set or whatever beginner armor, make sure to keep an eye out for any Rathalos flying about. You'll want what you can make out of their toenails, scales, and teardrops: the Rathalos Armor Set. Apart from being stylish too, it has one of the best skills in the Monster Hunter: World: Weakness Exploit.
This skill allows you to deal bigger and considerable chunks of damage to monsters whenever you hit their weak spots. Do keep in mind that the lightning resistance of the Rathalos Set is negative (really bad). Still, you can easily fix this with food buffs and while retaining Weakness Exploit. This armor can also teach you to rely more on your dodging skills as a defense rather than just tanking the hits, an excellent way to approach late game monster fights.
13 KIRIN SET
Anyone (even I) who tells you that wearing this armor set for its protective bonuses is lying. There are only a few reasons why people choose the Kirin armor for their hunter in Monster Hunter: World (and they're all similar); that's because the armor looks cute on their hunters... also because it has often been used as a poster armor for the previous Monster Hunter games. You can acquire it by hunting Kirin over and over again.
Apart from aesthetic reasons, there really isn't much point in choosing the Kirin Set over other better armor which can be acquired earlier. It does come with a neat skill which lets you use elemental weapons, but its poor resistance to some of the most common monster damage types is quite painful for your hunter. That really shouldn't matter much if you're already skilled while wearing it, though—part of what completes a Monster Hunter endgame is fashion.
12 ODOGARON SET
Do you want to deal high damage? Do you want decent resistance to damage types? Do you want to look like a ninja hunter of some sort? Or do you just like looking sexy in a Monster Hunter game? Look no further than the Odogaron Armor Set. It has everything you'll ever want before you start fighting Elder Dragons in Monster Hunter: World. Utility, style, and skills... everything...
Make sure you can get this armor as soon as you encounter Odogaron (the big red skinless doggo). It can be a difficult fight though; it's pretty agile and demonic but practice makes perfect and you can always capture this monster instead of slaying it, making the fight easier and quicker. It's quite special too; it's one of the few armors in the game you can wear as a set and not lose much.
11 VAAL HAZAK SET
For many, Vaal Hazak can be considered as one of the easiest Elder Dragons to slay. It's essentially a slow and walking weak spot compared to the other monsters of its kind. The fight with Vaal Hazak only seems difficult because you can constantly lose health if you're not prepared through the miasma attacks of this Elder Dragon.
Despite the rather easy fight with Vaal Hazak and it's easy-to-dodge morning breath, the reward is rather satisfactory. You'll be greeted with one of the edgiest armor sets in the game, which, as you might have guessed is called the Vaal Hazak Armor Set. It looks cool and has the added bonus of giving you a skill which lets you recover health better. This makes the Vaal Hazak set an ideal go-to for tanky builds which don't have to look like literal tanks.
10 XENO'JIIVA SET
Xeno'jiiva is the de facto final boss of the game and is also one of the biggest Elder Dragons in Monster Hunter: World. It's also quite new, and the armor set you can make from slaying it over and over again like a heartless scum is both a badge of honor and a fashion statement. It says you beat the game (sort of) and are ready for the real endgame from that point on.
Additionally, the Xeno'jiiva Armor is also quite good for most builds in the game. Melee weapon users can get more mileage out of their weapon sharpness while bowgun users can benefit from the ammo skill. All in all, do craft the Xeno'jiiva armor for fashion at the very least.
9 KULVE TAROTH SET
The Kulve Taroth Armor Set is hands down, the most elegant armor in the game and for that matter, the most stylish. It doesn't matter whether you're wearing the male or female hunter variant of the Kulve Taroth armor, you'll look like you're among the top 0.1% of all the hunters in the game (even if you're not). It can be acquired by successfully completing the Kulve Taroth raid several times, easier said than done.
It's not just for show too, you can wear the full Kulve Taroth Armor Set without much repercussions or drawbacks as it lets you play a jack-of-all-trades character. You can give support, do damage, and tank a bit with the innate stun resistance. More than anything, however, it's the beauty of the Kulve Taroth armor set which makes it worth considering over more powerful or more useful armor.
8 FULGUR ANJA SET
If the regular Anjanath Armor Set left you wanting, then the Fulgur Anja Set from the Iceborn expansion surely won't. It's a Master Rank armor you can obtain from killing Fulgur Anjanath over and over again. It's a lot more stylish than the regular Anjanath armor and has a different strength, mainly resisting Thunder instead of Fire.
The main attraction in the Fulgur Anja set, whether it's Alpha or Beta, would be the Weakness Exploit skill it provides. The helmet and the waist pieces both provide one level of the DPS-boosting skill and can help you make quick work of any monster you're hunting. Should you decide to go with the full set instead of mixing and matching, you'll enjoy a variety of offensive and defensive skills.
7 NERGIGANTE SET
The best defense is always a good offense and this also holds true for Monster Hunter: World. Whittling down the monster's health before it can wear you down is the optimal way to fight it (just ask any speedrunner). If your playstyle favors that and you love melee weapons like the majority of the Monster Hunter: World player base, then the Nergigante Set is a must; it's often a baseline requirement for most damage-per-second (DPS) builds.
The armor favors hunters who want to attack relentlessly and don't want to spend a big chunk of the hunt running away from the monster. It's a fitting armor set from Nergigante, of course-- the Elder Dragon usually won't let you breathe the very first time you fight it. Once you have his full armor, however, you're now ready for the endgame content and can mix and match it with other armor for maximum potential.
6 GLAVENUS SET
Maximum Might has always been as staple DPS skill and one of the most sought-after in armor pieces by many veteran players. Glavenus Set, regardless of whether it's the Beta or Alpha, provides Maximum Might in spades which is great since decorations containing that skill can be a pain to farm over and over again. Of course, you can get it by slaying Glavenus repeatedly.
The Glavenus torso, gauntlet, and waist pieces can even ensure that you get all five levels of Maximum Might while also getting the set bonus where you get another bonus level for Maximum Might. It's also a great skill for weapons with sharpness as the helmet and boots will give you handicraft, definitely a worthy replacement for the Nergigante Set.
5 DRAGONKING EYEPATCH
The Dragonking Eyepatch is not exactly a full armor set-- it's just a piece of headgear. Nevertheless, it's purpose is a lot more noticeable compared to how subtle this eyepatch is. Remember what the Rathalos Set was good for? The Weakness Exploit skill? Dragonking Eyepatch gives you two levels of that skill, essentially making the Rathalos armor obsolete.
Pair this one with the Nergigante or Odogaron Set (minus the helm) and you have yourself a proper DPS hunter build. It also doesn't matter what weapon you're wielding, Weakness Exploit from Dragonking Eyepatch is applicable for any murder tool. The only way to get the Dragonking Eyepatch is by slaying Nergigante for the first time. Only then will you be rewarded with the opportunity to craft this badass eyepatch.
4 NARGACUGA BETA+ SET
The Nargacuga Beta Set is considered as a great mid-Master Rank gear as it allows many players in that period in the game to comfortably progress through the story without suffering too much frustration through deaths. The Nargacuga set allows you some respectable amount of defense with Evade Window while still having a decent DPS with Peak Performance.
Meanwhile, the set bonus also acts as a pseudo Handicraft skill since Nargacuga essence reduces sharpness loss and can sometimes preserve ammunition for ranged weapons. Farming Nargacuga for his parts, however, can get rather perilous since the monster is fast and will surely surprise non-veterans.
3 DRACHEN ALPHA+ SET
If you're no newbie (or even if you are), part of the reason you're probably here is to look for the best attainable armor set the game has for you. So here it is, the Drachen Armor Set. It makes the Nergigante Set look like training wheels by comparison. The Drachen Armor is necessary for a top-tier build speedrunner or DPS build for melee hunters and probably for ranged ones too outside Master Rank.
Wearing it as a full set, however, is not advisable since it's only top-tier when paired with other armor sets (though the majority might still be Drachen). If you're already skilled, then the Drachen Armor builds will essentially trivialize monsters (even Elder Dragons) that were made for solo hunts. Acquiring it will not be easy, though; you'll have to defeat the most difficult monster in the game, Behemoth where your wits and maturity will be tested like never before.
2 YIAN GARUGA BETA+ SET
We don't recommend wearing the whole Yian Garuga Beta+ Set set especially if you're in the later stage of your Master Rank progression but there's no shame in wearing it all. Do note that you won't get any set bonus, though since the set doesn't come with one innately. Without that out of the way, it's still worth farming for some of the parts of the Yian Garuga set, namely the boots (prioritize getting those).
That's because the Yian Garuga Beta+ boots are instrumental to building your perfect Master Rank hunter; by perfect, we mean tailored to the speedrunning META (most effective tactic available) in Monster Hunter World: Iceborne. It's all due to the Critical Eye +2 innate bonus of the boots. As for which armor you should be pairing Yian Garuga Beta+ set with, behold...
1 TEOSTRA BETA+ SET
When it comes to Master Rank, Teostra Beta+ Set simply dethrones the Drachen Set because of how Latent Power works. You also get Critical Eye and Weakness Exploit. The chest piece is optional for some builds, it's preferable if you replace it with something that has Attack Boost or Critical Eye like the Kirin Alpha+ or the Brute Tigrex Beta+ chest.
Pair all of them with the Yian Garuga Beta+ boots and one of the top DPS melee weapons and you can have the most optimal melee build in-game. As it is, melee weapons are generally the most used weapon in Monster Hunter World. You will have to adjust for ranged builds, of course, but with the same DPS philosophy and adherence, you shouldn't have a problem.
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